A long time ago, the word "Geek" meant "a person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked." Today, the word suggests "an enthusiast or expert in a technological field or activity" such as a Computer Geek. The label "Geek" is often worn with pride. ("Geek Squad", for example, refers to Best Buys (BBY) computer services group.)
If we had to create a "Geek portfolio" what companies might be in it?
1. Red Hat Linux (RHT) -- A good section of Computer Geeks were anti-Microsoft. One of the companies which represented the anti-Microsoft movement is Red Hat Linux. Linux is a Unix based operating system that is very different from any Microsoft Windows Operating System.
2. Sun Microsystems (SUNW) -- Sun Microsystems is another anti-Microsoft play. Among the many things they do, they create the Solaris Operating system, again, a Unix operating system that is very different from any Microsoft Windows variant. They also develop the language Java, which is a computer programming language that can easily be moved from one platform (for example, Microsoft Windows), to another (for example, the Linux operating system).
3. Shanda Interactive (SNDA) and NCTY (The9 Limited) -- Both Shanda Interactive and The9 Limited are Chinese Online Gaming companies. Yes, there are a lot of Chinese online computer geeks who like to play online games. Do you know what "WoW" (World of Warcraft) or "MMORPG" (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) means?
4. Comcast (CMCSA) or AT&T (T) -- Geeks need their high speed internet connection, wireless data service, and specialty shows on Cable. Also, the Unix operating system was created by employees of AT&T and Bell Labs (Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie, Douglas Mcllroy and others.)
5. Research in Motion (RIMM) -- Producer of the popular handset Blackberry.
6. Corning Glassware (GLW) -- A computer geek may want multiple flat screen high definition monitors and TV sets. Some may even have two large LCD monitors for each computer. Corning is involved in the flat screen LCD market, and they also produce products for the Optical Networking world. Geeks need higher broadband speeds that Optical Networking provides!
7. Discovery Holding (DISCA) -- Discovery Holdings makes programs such as Animal Planet, Discovery Channel and Science Channel.
8. Blackboard Inc (BBBB) -- Blackboard makes education software and applications for the studious geek. They are helping bring education into the 21st century.
9. Yahoo (YHOO) -- They manage lots of internet services such as Yahoo Messenger, Yahoo mail, Yahoo groups, and other social networking activities.
10. IAC/Interactive Corp (IACI) -- Provides a variety of services and internet sites, including sites such as evite.com where invitations to many of life's activities are done electronically. I've been invited to a wedding using evite!
11. Google (GOOG) -- Digital information is everywhere, and Google is there to help bring it to you. They also own YouTube.com, where people can share and view internet videos.
12. Tivo (TIVO) -- Their brand of Digital Video Recorder (digital version of VHS) changed the lives of many people around the country. It became so popular, that "Tivo" became a verb, which means, to record something on cable or satellite TV digitally. Those who have Tivo swear by it, and their lives are truly transformed.
13. Gamestop (GME) -- Video and computer gaming geeks need Gamestop so they can purchase their next gaming console or game.
14. Domino's Pizza (DPZ) -- Geeks need their greasy brain food for late night sessions.
15. Pepsi (PEP) -- Maker of Mountain Dew, other sodas, and snacks. Geeks need some sugar and caffeine to keep them going.
16. Dolby (DLB) -- Audiophile geeks need Dolby.
17. Apple (AAPL) -- Computer geeks like the Mac (another anti-Microsoft play), and many others like iTunes, ipod, and the new iPhone, the latest Geek product from Apple.
18. Ebay (EBAY) -- For Collector Geeks who want to either find a good deal, or hard to find items.
19. Marvel Entertainment (MVL) -- For Comic Book Geeks!
20. Hasbro (HAS) -- Toys for future geeks, includes the Transformer robots.
21. I-Robot (IRBT) -- Produces robots for civilians and the military. Don't true geeks want a vacuum cleaner that is a robot that cleans your floor for you?
22. Bidu (BIDU) and Rediff (REDF) -- There are Chinese and Indian Geeks as well who like to use Bidu's and Rediff's internet services.
23. Garmin (GRMN) and Navteq (NVT) -- Garmin makes GPS products and Navteq makes the digital maps. Doesn't every geek want their automobiles to have GPS? Also, more people are using online services to find directions using Navteq maps. Maybe some geeks have never used a paper map before.
24. McGraw Hill (MHP) -- They publish textbooks and other related products.
25. Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO) -- Good place to get balances, beakers, test tubes and other related products.
26. Canon (CAJ) -- They make many electronic products including Digital Cameras for Photography geeks.
27. Sandisk (SNDK) -- Geeks need to store their data on portable devices.
28. Shutterfly (SFLY) -- Online scrapbook geeks need a place to put their digital photos.
29. Adobe (ADBE) -- They make Adobe Photoshop and other digital photo and video editing products. Adobe also makes Flash, a special technology for the Internet/Web.
30. Toei (4816) -- Japanese anime company including "Dragonball Z, One Piece, Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, Yu-Gi-oh, Sailor Moon, Voltron, old Transformer Cartoons, etc."
31. Best Buy (BBY) -- Electronic retailer that Electronic geeks would like.
32. Netflix (NFLX) -- For Movie Geeks.
The ideas above are my own plus a lot of help from the wonderful stock picking social networking site, Stockpickr.com. It's free to join!